It's a warm, windy evening here. I was looking forward to maybe doing some gardening, but I do not like working in wind. Before sunset I'll at least walk down and see if the greens seeds I planted need any water, and maybe after dinner I'll start some more tomatoes and other seeds indoors. But wind and me just do not get along.
As we were migrating to the cook shed to start dinner (grilled mahi mahi from the freezer, organic brown rice, and broccoli) The Hermit asked me about a bird song he hadn't noticed before and didn't remember. I looked up just in time to see a ruby crowned kinglet presenting itself obviously; its crown was fully exposed and glowing ruby in the evening sun. I remembered posting about them a year ago (well, April 18th), noting their precisely phrased, melodic song. There was a whole flock of them, flitting among the growing buds in the aspen trees. I tried to take a picture, but even with 12x optical zoom it's hard to capture something so tiny, and so active.
I have now gone through my annual frog song re-education. It should be simple, we only have four or five species of frogs here, but it seems I can never remember which is the Western Chorus frog (think running your thumb along a comb) or a green frog (loose banjo string) or a wood frog (resembles a fragmented duck quack). The chorus frogs tend to inhabit the roadside wetlands, while the wood frogs are in the bog near the house. There are not too many green frogs around here, but spring peepers are everywhere, and loud. Toads and tree frogs won't chime in for a week or two. I learned today that chorus frogs are indeed "explosive" breeders, taking advantage of the first available conditions to complete their annual orgy. We also have leopard frogs, but they seem to be quieter and more difficult to distinguish.
A single blue winged teal was on the pond yesterday evening, and I heard a woodcock and a Wilson's snipe at about 4 am, displaying in the near-full moon. Spring is good.